Ruling: Civil case against Topeka police officer can proceed

Published: Jun. 29, 2020 at 4:33 PM CDT
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A federal appeals court upheld Monday a lower court’s decision not to grant qualified immunity to a Topeka police officer accused of using excessive force against a handcuffed Black man.

The U.S. 10th Circuit Court of Appeals rejected the appeal from police officer Christopher Janes that had sought to dismiss the civil lawsuit brought by Timothy Harris against him and the city of Topeka.

The three-judge appeals panel ruled that a reasonable jury could find that Harris, once handcuffed and walking to the patrol car, did not present an immediate threat. The decision sends the case back for trial.